John Hardie, the marketing chief drafted in to ITV this week by its
new chief executive, Richard Eyre, will have a brief to overhaul ITV’s
marketing and advertising strategy, senior industry figures advised this
Hardie, the managing director of cosmetics and toiletries, Europe, at
Procter & Gamble, joins ITV on 3 November as its marketing and
He will have to develop a more consistent branding for the ITV network
to reinforce its position with viewers.
Hardie will join the new ITV task force headed by Eyre and the programme
director, David Liddiment, and will be a key figure at the new, more
Eyre said Hardie would have a dual role: to monitor the changing demands
of the viewer and reflect them in the development of ITV’s product; and
to represent ITV’s advertising customers at the highest level.
Mick Desmond, the chief executive of the ITV sales house, Laser, said
Hardie must develop a consistent positioning of the ITV brand
nationally. Paul Taylor, the managing director of BMP Optimum, said:
’ITV needs to start acting like a brand leader.
Now it can start feeling good about itself again.’
ITV’s decision to hire from within the ranks of P&G, one of its most
vociferous critics, has been seen as a signal of its determination to
gain a closer understanding of, and relationship with, advertisers.
P&G has been a keen supporter of advertisers’ calls for an increase in
advertising minutage on ITV - a move that has been firmly resisted by
ITV itself - and has added its voice to criticism of ITV’s audience
Eyre said Hardie’s background at P&G was a significant asset for him in
his new role. ’P&G is a very marketing driven company and is one of the
single most important customers of ITV. That gives John a head start,’
Hardie, who declined to speak to the press this week, takes on a
marketing budget that is likely to be expanded beyond this year’s pounds
5 million for off-air promotions. He also inherits existing
relationships with the creative agency M&C Saatchi, the media agency,
Motive, and the poster specialist, Concord.